Why does reputation matter? Because once you lose it you may never get it back.
Listen to Greg’s insight on rebuilding his own reputation and why people need to pay attention to how they are seen and perceived by all of the people in their lives.
“You have to pay attention to the people you are with. You have to pay attention to the actions of the people that you’re around because all it takes is one major mistake by them and you can get sucked into their hole and you can be dragged to the bottom just like some of the people that were affected by my actions.”
-Greg Paul Kotsaftis
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01:09 – Insights and thoughts about how people undervalue building their reputation.
03:01 – The repercussions from not maintaining a good reputation reputation
04:31 – Greg’s pain and the sting of having to start all over again, find new friends, new people that can trust him having to rebuild his reputation after all his mistakes
05:25 – Greg’s unwritten rule of letting other people know that he is on a short leash
07:07 – Why you need to pay attention to build your reputation
08:05 – Are you a good dad or the bad dad? The image you are portraying can damage how your children see you as a person
12:42 – How you manage your reputation and you manage your ego
15:38 – The time it takes for you to rebuild your reputation after a major damage and taint
16:15 – How the internet and social media can hurt and taint your reputation
18:30 Greg’s rant about the importance of protecting and building your reputation
Connect with Gregory Paul
(Note, this was transcribed using a transcription software and may not reflect the exact words used in the podcast)
You have to pay attention to the people you are with. You have to pay attention to the actions of the people that you’re around because all it takes is one major mistake by them and you can get sucked into their hole and you can be dragged to the bottom just like some of the people that were affected by my actions.
Hey, everybody, this is Gregory Paul Kotsaftis of the Pitching The Truth Podcast. Please sit back, relax and enjoy today’s episode. As always thank you so much for listening.
Hello and welcome to the Pitching To Truth Podcast. It’s me GregoryPaul Kotsaftis going to say hi see what’s going on, Checking in with all of you to see what’s happening. Been having a little bit of a little revelation recently about what exactly it is I want to do with my life and what kind of impact I want to have on other people.
And I am talking with a really good friend of mine, Molly we’re working on an online product, a business product for sales related coaching.
And we got into this topic of reputation. How much does reputation matter?
So today I wanted to talk a little bit about that. And just share with you some insights and thoughts I have regarding how people don’t really value their reputation.
You know, we see every day now on the news in the media that people’s reputations are just getting destroyed left and right. It’s just an absolute bloodbath out there with this administration.
Everybody seems to be in the wake of it. But I think what’s really interesting is that we only see on the news what happens, right?
We see the carnage we see the car wreck. We see them. Crash into the wall and their reputations destroyed because of some catastrophic mistake or lie that they told months even years ago.
But what happens after that? The news stops right and we move on to the next train wreck and the next big story. And that person sitting there back there with their reputation destroyed.
What do you think happens after the lights fade and the cameras go away and people are now sitting by themselves having to start all over again.
Well nobody knows this better than me. Because you see I through my actions had my reputation pretty much destroyed. Probably not to the level of what some of these people have going on because I didn’t have a large social circle of higher-ups that I was running with. You know I wasn’t running with the big dogs as some of these people are. And I don’t think people really realize the implications that can that having a poor reputation can have now see some examples right. You could somebody pretty high up in some political arena that gets their reputation tarnished. They’re pretty much toast. In other words, they’re never going to be, they’re never gonna be able to obtain the political aspirations that maybe they’ve worked their entire life for. Based on one mistake or one lie that they’ve made.
The repercussions from not maintaining their reputation. In other words not living their life the way they should be living it or the way that they feel they want to live it or they know they should live it can have huge implications on them in regards to their career their life and their reputation.
Imagine being in a circle of very powerful influential people. Imagine running off to big gala events and big charity events and mixing and mingling and going to the best restaurants and being involved with all of these great people and then all the sudden making a mistake that will tarnish your reputation forever. And you had all the sudden you’re shunned. You’re completely shunned from that group. You can’t be a part of it anymore. You can’t find job friends turn their backs on you. Maybe your family and your wife are ashamed of you and you pretty much have nowhere to go. You have to start all over again. Imagine how hard that would be.
Now that’s on the extreme, right? But let’s tone it down. I certainly wasn’t running in that kind of big circles it was just me and my little business and my small hometown.
But you know I didn’t pay attention to my reputation and that’s exactly what happened to me. The minute the news hit the papers the minute social media blew it all up I was done. People turn their back on me. People that I knew really really well shunned me and they didn’t speak to me. And this is stuck for a long time and I’m just a little old Greg out here in Colorado trying to do the right thing now and rebuild my reputation, rebuild my life. And I have felt that pain and that sting of having to start all over again and find new friends and find new people that can trust me having to rebuild my reputation after all my mistakes been time-consuming. Right down to the woman that I’m engaged to. It took literally years to earn a certain level of trust with her because of my past.
And how did that happened? Well, It happened by basically walking my walk every day. Being honest being ethical. Being true being giving, kind, grateful, gratitude is a big big part of my life. A big part of what’s going on. And it took a lot of time just to build her trust back up. And not only with her but with numerous other people. I had one or two friends that stuck through me with this whole deal. But there was kind of an unwritten rule again letting them know and letting me know that I was on a little bit of a short leash.
You know I was on a tight leash as regards to my past and what I had done and that you know if my actions were going to go back to the way they were that I was pretty much not going to be hanging around with them anymore.
So why does this all matter while people don’t really pay attention to reputation?
No, they really don’t pay attention to reputation until they make a mistake and then all the sudden they’re like. “Oh Shit, I’ve got to somehow fix this now.” Right? I’ve got to apologize. I’ve got to step back. I’ve got to start all over again because they make a mistake.
You know I was in a facility. In my facility. I was with a guy. Remember his name but he was a banker and he had embezzled money from the bank. He’d taken money out of accounts he wasn’t supposed to take him out of and invested them in the stock market was basically using the bank’s money to make big financial gains in the stock market when the market was going crazy. Right?
Everybody was making money in the market. And eventually, of course, he got caught. But it was funny because he got caught. And this is this these are his claims but he put the money back.
In other words, he put the money back that he had taken. But he had used that money for again. And even though he had put the money back course he went in front of the judge and the judge says I don’t care. You still committed a crime and put him in jail because that’s how I met him.
You know his reputation is forever destroyed. He had small children. He had a wife. I remember seeing them in the visiting area. He was a really nice guy. You know similar in the background as me. And he’ll never be a banker again. It’s never going to happen. Matter of fact that’s what he’s been his whole life. So where is he going to go? What’s he going to start over at? And no matter where you go. Your reputation is always going to be tainted by your past mistakes. People need to pay attention to their reputation. You need to be working on your reputation every single day. You need to be focusing on how you’re perceived and how you’re holding yourself not only within your family your children and your peers but with every action that you take in public and everything you do every day. So my understanding of this and how I think of it is ok my children watch my actions every day. And now they watch my actions 10 times right because obviously I made some big mistakes and they’re very leery that they don’t want me to make them again because they don’t want me to go away. But also that they’re leery because there’s a certain level of his dad a good guy or dad a bad guy? So I have to make sure that I am above board beyond aboveboard every single day which takes a lot of work and a lot of time and a lot of energy.
Now I know many of man out there who may think it’s cool to talk crap about somebody else in front of their children, talk crap about their wife in front of their children, or their ex-wife, not be kind to people in public generally acts like this shit doesn’t stink and they’re above everything else because they think that that’s being strong. They think that’s being a powerful man because you’re in charge and you’re telling everybody what to do and you don’t care what other people think and you’re just gonna spew your hate to everybody you meet. And that’s OK because that’s what you want to do.
What they don’t understand is that you are an example for your children. You are an example of reputation and you’re an example of how you hold yourself and what you’re supposed to be doing every day. And by acting that way and showing that kind of behavior what are you really doing. What kind of image are you portraying?
Well, you’re not portraying the image of a strong man you’re portraying the image of a liar a manipulator of an angry hateful person and you are in a way damaging your reputation with your children. Eventually, the truth always comes out. We all know that they’re going to grow up they’re going to look at you and they’re going to say oh he’s not my dad anymore. He’s an adult. He’s a human beings a person. Yes, he has flaws but this is who he is. And you may have idolized him as being this honest, ethical, upstanding businessman, which is exactly how my children saw me until I made my mistakes. And then all the sudden your reputation is tarnished forever because that’s not really who you are.
That’s my point. People are watching you every day. You’re at your work you’re at your office and you’re sitting down in a meeting. You’re sitting down it’s not even a meeting let’s say you’re sitting in lunch with your boss and you’re hanging out. Your boss is talking to you about something and maybe you’re shooting a shit about what you did this weekend. Who knows what. And somebody calls and wants to talk to your boss and they have some pressing issue and you know the issues pressing because you know the person that’s on the phone and your boss says them all just tell him I’m in a meeting. Tell me a meeting I’ll call back later tell when I’m meeting a very busy hang up the phone. The boss kind of gives you a smirk or a smile like you know he just basically brushed that person off and blew them off because he wants to talk to you.
How does it what kind of position is that put everybody in right. You’re sitting there uncomfortably because you’re thinking to yourself well I know that person really needed my boss’s help but instead he’s going to sit here and talk to me about going to golf and this weekend or doing whatever you were doing. That’s one aspect of it right so he’s compromised your position because you’re sitting in there doing that and you can’t really share that information with anybody because he’s your boss. And at the same time as a leader, he’s basically showing you that he really doesn’t care about someone else’s needs that are related to work. That it really was not that important to him. Because he’d rather be just talking to you about whatever he’s talking about.
So it becomes again this starts a click this starts positioning people in certain levels of power. It makes you feel like you’re on the inside track right. Because you’re the person that he decided to talk to instead of this person flash for flash forward in two to three weeks and let’s say you’re the one calling and all the sudden the same person the boss is like you know it’s almost a meeting I’m very busy I can’t talk to me now and you think to yourself Man is he just in this shoot the shit with somebody at the other side of the desk maybe he just doesn’t care.
That’s what I’m talking about with reputation because those actions by not slowing down and really paying attention to it will breed. They’ll breed into some other mis discretion if that person behaves that way all the time and decides that it’s okay to you know tell a little white lie or push someone aside for their own personal gain or they’re of their time eventually that’s going to lead to bigger worse problems. You know we’re seeing it all over the place.
The gentleman that was running three or four different major automobile companies in Japan recently right. can’t remember the name. That gentleman’s name but he got caught embezzling money he’s making millions of dollars maybe billions with a B. I can’t remember but the point was this. He had no reason to act this way. No reason to embezzle there’s no he had no financial needs but his ego is so inflated that he could do whatever he wanted that he felt like his reputation didn’t matter. He was above it. He could do whatever he wanted to do and no one is ever going to call him on it.
It’s a fine line between how you manage your reputation and you manage your ego. And these are the things that until you’ve experienced it until you’ve had it all ripped away nobody really pays attention. No one ever thinks it’s going to happen to them.
These are things that I think people really need to pay attention to and you need to watch and see and I see it every day that people aren’t realizing it affects their not only their own personal brand and their own personal perceptions of who they are but it affects the company they work for it affects the friends they have it affects their family it affects all the people around them because they are there the image right there they’re the guiding light for the group. You’re all part of a community. And if you have a few people in there that are not doing the right thing or you’re bending the rules or trying to do different things those people are going to drag everybody else down by action dragged a lot of people down you know some of these people.
I thought were my friends they turn their back on me and they walked away. Later on, I found out that they had all kinds of questions asked answer about my actions. They didn’t do anything wrong. They didn’t commit any crimes but they were associated with me whether they were a friend, whether they were my ex-wife, whether they were business people that just did business with me. There weren’t even business partners. We were not connected in any way, shape, or form but people knew that we did business together. Their reputations were tarnished by my actions.
Now, I hid those from them so of course I’m very sorry about that and I wasn’t honest with them. But here’s the point.
You have to pay attention to the people you are with. You have to pay attention to the actions of the people that you’re around because all it takes is one major mistake by them and you can get sucked into their hole and you can be dragged to the bottom just like some of the people were affected by my actions. And I think in today’s world because we’re seeing it every single day people are becoming numb to it. Becoming numb to the fact that,t Oh yeah what’s the big deal this guy goes to prison. This guy gets indicted. This guy lied. That guy lied. This guy stole money. It’s not a big deal.
We see all the aftermath. We don’t we saw. We don’t see the aftermath we see the upfront actions but we don’t see the aftermath.
I think that’s really what it’s not being really thought about. You need to think about it.
You need to think about what’s going to happen. You think about these people’s lives after the cameras off them. You think about my life because after I got out of prison and I’m starting all over again literally catering because that’s the only job I could get and trying to rebuild friendships and find a connection with good people. It’s taken me a long time. And because of what I’ve done it’s going to be a lifelong battle. I know that. It’s not going to be a couple of years and all these interviews can make. Oh, Greg’s a great guy. Look at all the thing he’s doing for the community. Look at all the volunteerism.
Yes, that will help. But the reputation rebuild is going to take a long long time. I don’t even know how long.
You know there’s a speaker out there Walden Long who is a sales trainer and a speaker and he was actually at my facility six years before me. And so he’s got about a six-year I guess he does have a six-year head start on me. And he is now a pretty successful guy out there doing it. You know he’s doing what he’s doing and he’s training people and helping people and making money and doing pretty well at it. But you know it’s a different time.
Back when it happened to him. Yeah, the internet was around but it was not probably near as vicious as it is now. You know you will get eaten up and chewed up and spit out in a heartbeat. In today’s world of social media and everything else, I mean somebody makes a mistake it’s flashed around in seconds man it’s a different world if you make a mistake.
Pay attention to your reputation. Think about all those people that go viral. Think about how many people go viral for the positive things they do and how many people go viral for the negative things they do. You have to be really careful with your reputation. You have to be careful what you say about other people. You have to be careful about the opinions that you express because yes they may be your opinions and maybe you don’t care. You want to express them but you’ve got to be ready to deal with the repercussions of that. You’ve got to think about your social media feeds and what you put on there because it never goes away. It stays there forever.
These are things I never thought of. When I was committing my crimes. These are things I never thought of. Back in the early days of my life, I’ve met so many upstanding strong ethical people that would never do these kinds of things. But then again every once in a while right you see that guy looks like he’s perfectly squeaky clean and he makes one mistake and all the sudden what happens. He’s buried. Some sexual misconduct. Some bad actions some who knows what. You know it’s better than a really rough couple of years of watching people just burn up.
So that’s my rant today about reputation. Reputation is important. All of you need to pay attention to it. We all need to get out there and really focus on making sure we’re trying to do the right thing every day and just take our time and most of we take it from me.
Try to bounce back after destroying your reputation is not fun. It’s a touch a long hard battle and you know that’s what I want to speak on I think I’m in. I’m working on a project’s project right now I’m trying to decide if it’s going to be relatable to this but I think this is a topic that really needs to be discussed with all business people, all salespeople, everybody in every organization because the importance of protecting your company’s reputation and protecting the reputation of your brand I think is really undervalued. I think we really need to pay attention to it and I think people really need to understand and learn from the lessons that are happening in today’s society.
It’s all I got for now. Thank you so much for listening pitching the truth. Please do me a favor leave some feedback down below if you like this podcast. I am working diligently to try to get more guests on here I’m hoping to have a few more next week make it a little bit more interesting and talk about some different topics that I want to discuss.
But again thank you for listening and I appreciate all of you and that’s what I’ve got. Thanks.